Decision to grant US citizenship to Dr Afridi not finalised: State Department

Victoria Nuland says the bill to grant Dr Shakil Afridi citizenship is moving through the Congress.


Web Desk February 07, 2012

WASHINGTON: The decision to grant US citizenship to Dr Shakil Afridi, the man who allegedly helped the US in tracking down Osama bin Laden, has not been finalised, said US State Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland on Monday.

A US Congressman had tabled a bill on Sunday to the House of Representatives asking that Dr Afridi be ranted citizenship, calling for the doctor to be deemed “a naturalised citizen of the United States.”

Afridi is under arrest in Pakistan and had allegedly organised a polio vaccination campaign in Abbottabad for the Central Intelligence Agency, in order to collect DNA sample to prove that the al Qaeda leader was present in the Abbottabad compound.

Nuland, in the daily press briefing, said: “Congress resolution which is moving through the Congress now, it is not finalised yet. But generally, these kinds of moves on behalf of individuals… don’t have force of law. It’s a recommendation.”

When asked about a ‘Pakistani lobbyist’ in the US who allegedly wrote a letter to the US officials to apologise on behalf of Pakistan on the November 26 Nato attack, Nuland clarified that there were no lobbyists being used for communication between the two states.

“We do our business with Pakistan through our representatives in Islamabad and throughout the country as well as through the Pakistani Embassy here,” she said.

COMMENTS (12)

Wazir Afridi | 9 years ago | Reply

Pakistan gave them permission to search for OBL . They been getting paid in billions we can't hide that. Pakistan killed innocent Pashtuns civilian and let OBL be in safe haven . Any how I know about Dr shakeel he used to live in lodhi near to San Fransico he got to US on Green Card his wife is also US citizen that make him automatically eligible to US citizen. He worked under war satiation that should keep him in status for permeant residency.(like non-US citizen soldiers in US army).

Grace | 9 years ago | Reply

@Wazir Afridi: You really think that Pakistan can keep an eye out for every criminal and fighter who has fled Afghanistan and is hiding in Pakistan? Does Pak have the resources? Do you forget that OBL and other fighters were brought in from foreign countries by Americans who used them to kick out the Soviets. Then these same extremists went rogue but the West abandoned them in the region. Is it not conceivable that some low level operatives who were helping him fight the Russians might still have been helping him without the knowledge of Pak army and Pak government when there are so many challenges in the country? When any Pakistani citizen spies for a foreign country to do acts on Pakistan's soil without government knowledge, you can't tell why Pak government would be upset? That too when US and Pak should be allies working together. What if UK or US ally uses US citizens behind US back without US government knowledge and does acts on US soil? Will US be happy then? Of course not, they will say it is a violation of sovereignty. Don't cast aspersions on majority of Pakistani military and intelligence including the many Pashtun who stand up for the nation's dignity.

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